The recession in Germany, which has now been officially confirmed, has made the implementation of more efficient value creation a top concern for industrial companies. This is the result of the current study, “Future Industry 2023.” Instead of simply wielding the red pencil against cost pressure, 80% of companies want to achieve their goals with lean processes and by avoiding waste. For the study, the consulting company Staufen surveyed more than 400 industrial companies from German-speaking Europe.
Inflation and sharply increased energy costs are continuing to put industrial companies under pressure. The key to solving these problems is Lean Management. More than 90% of the companies surveyed for the study are convinced of this. “In the C-suites, the insight is that just cost cutting is a short-term solution and not sustainable,” says Christian Sprenger, Partner at Staufen AG. Four in ten companies (44%) are pursuing their growth goals with lean processes. In this Staufen partner’s opinion, this is the right path: “The central concern is to become more resilient and increase a company’s own competitive capability. Then crises aren’t so scary.”
Operational excellence: There’s a lot of potential in the indirect areas
The Lean maturity level determines how quickly and efficiently companies react to new challenges and can make forward-looking decisions. Although in the meantime more than 50% of industrial operations rely on Lean Management in their value creation, there are big differences here, now as before. Christian Sprenger: “Unfortunately, the terms Lean Management and lean processes are still predominantly linked to the area of production.” In fact, though, it is precisely the indirect areas that have the potential to make a significant contribution to improving results through operational excellence.”
Thus far, only about one in every five industrial companies apply lean principles in indirect areas. Approximately half of these lean pioneers are implementing the lean philosophy strategically and comprehensively. “A long-term improvement of company performance is only achieved by anchoring lean and change competence in the entire organization,” adds Staufen partner Christian Möllers. The communication capabilities of modern managers play a decisive role here, say eight of ten companies. Two-thirds (66%) also know that it’s precisely here that their own managers are most in need of training.
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